kayak transport

I think I am just looking for a little reassurance. I’m in the market for my first kayak and am leaning toward a Tsunami 140. I will be transporting it on my Subaru Forester. I’m a little worried about it being unwieldy once on the car—so much so that I am wondering if smaller boat would make more sense for me. It would seem a little disconcerting seeing the boat sticking out over the hood of the car. I have no experience with kayak transport but am acustomed to driving long distances with bikes (using Thule gear).

Any advice? I am not too worried about actually getting on the car, just being comfortable once it is up there. Are there any systems that would be especially secure ( I am partial to Thule but would also consider Yakima).

Thanks for any advice.

Check the other threads
Look at the “Roof Rack – Length of Kayak” thread and other recent threads addressing this issue.

I see that now. Sorry for the redundancy

Forrester has wide spacing on bows
The factory bows on my girlfriends Forester (2002 I think) go quite far apart. I’ve loaded a 16’ kayak (brand new, home from dealer) on there in the dark on foamies and it was fine for the 1.5 hour drive. It also worked well for rec kayaks for day-long trips.

I find loading them on that car as easy as sliding them into the bed of my pickup, and easier than onto the roof of my jeep, which is over 6’ high.

how’s this one?

– Last Updated: May-04-09 1:52 PM EST –

I carry a nearly 20 foot boat on top of a Legacy. A boat that is very light with a large volume in the bow, so I feel when the wind hits (and can see the bow lines go taught to windward).

There's no reason at all to worry if you correctly carry it.


I think that answers my question.

I haul a Tsunami 145 (w/rudder = 15’) on the roof of my 14’ Civic with no troubles at all. I just use a pair of saddles up front and Hully Rollers in the rear.

I strap the boat down at the rack points and add a bow and stern line just for good measure.

The bow and stern lines really don’t do a lot, but they give me the oportunity to see, at a glance, what the yak’s doing up there.


2 Tsunamis on Forester…
We travel all over New England and carry 2 Tsunami 140’s on our Forester all the time, using a Thule rack with Hullaports. We have also carried kayaks even a bit longer so don’t worry, it works GREAT!

PS: We used carry the 2 Tsunamis on a Toyota Corolla with no problems!

As long as you have either Yakima ,
Thule, or some other quality rack system properly installed, and using compatable saddles or J cradles, with cam-lock buckle straps, (not ratchet straps)you should be able to travel where ever you want at high way speeds.

That is a great car for carrying boats.